If you are getting serious about woodworking you have probably entertained the idea of buying a table saw. Table saws are efficient tools which can make anything from bird feeders, drawers with angled edges, wall shelves, or pieces for you favorite board game.
However, there are hundreds of configurations and models available in the market today. Because a decent table saw can run anywhere from several hundred to several thousand dollars, it is important to pick one that will be able to handle any project you will build over the next several years. Table saws are one of the most popular saw options today but you need to be sure whether you need a Jobsite table saw or a portable table saw.
Buying a table saw is not as simple as purchasing a $30 chisel. Table saw prices vary by thousands of dollars making it very important for you to pick one that has everything you need without blowing past your price range.
In addition, realizing that you will later need an upgrade will also cost thousands of dollars, so it is extremely important to pick the right table saw from the start. Below are key definitions to help fully grasp this purchase guide.
Construction type cuts – varied cutting styles applied in the construction industry
Bench Top Table Saw – a type of table saw that can only be operated once placed on a supporting surface such as a bench or table
Cabinet saw – a type of table saw whose motors are enclosed in a cabinet-like structure
Dust collection – a dust collection system on a table saw where you can connect to a vacuum for easy collection of debris and dust
Miter gauge – gadget used to hold workpieces together and at a set angle while working on them using a table saw
Wings – A table like-extension on a table saw for using the machine safely
Bevel Capability – the ability to twist and tilt the cutting blade at different angles
T Glide Fence – a fencing system added to a table saw to enhance its precision and strength
Cutting Depth – the deepness of a cut made by a blade
Table Saw Top Picks - Summary
Pick #1 Dewalt 10 Inch Table Saw
The Dewalt 10 Inch Table Saw comes with incredible power and is our #1 pick. This model can literally handle anything but only slows down when handling extremely hard materials.
While it can definitely boost your working attitude, this model comes at a very reasonable price range and is quite affordable even to the average woodworker. It currently goes for $585 and has a 3-year limited manufacturer’s warranty.
Moreover, the Dewalt 10 Inch Table Saw is considerably portable and smaller compared to other models. This means that you do not have to worry much about the space in your tightly packed workshop and you can move it around whenever and wherever you want at any time.
The Dewalt 10 Inch Table Saw comes with a miter gauge, which is quite good for making accurate cuts at any desired angle. However, the one featured in this model is claimed to be illegible, flimsy, and inaccurate.
Others have reviewed it claiming that it has a bad tendency of popping up unnecessarily leading to inconveniences. To correct this error, we suggest that you purchase and install a different but compatible miter gauge.
Overall, the Dewalt 10 Inch Table Saw is a powerful table saw that means business, comes at an affordable price, and has spot-on accuracy but only if you use the correct miter gauge.
Pick #2 Skil Table Saw With Folding Stand
Priced at $259 and coupled with a 30-day money-back guarantee plus a 1-year warranty period, the Skil Table Saw with Folding Stand is our best budget option. This table saw is quite efficient and is perfect for those working on a fixed budget. As the name suggests, this model comes with a folding stand that makes it convenient whenever you want to move it around to save space.
The folding stands also make it easy to set it up and this will only take a few minutes.
Other appealing features include a bevel capacity of 47-degree, table extension (wing), and a cut depth of up to 3.5 inches. At its standing price, these make it very desirable and most common among repair people and home-based woodworkers.
On the downside, the Skil Table Saw also has a few flaws. For starters, you might have a hard time getting straight cuts as the blade fails firmly adjust to 00. It’s also alleged that the machine is noisy due to vibrations caused when the blade runs at high speeds.
Furthermore, there are claims that its fence rarely stays straight while working. Since the model often vibrates, this makes the fence to shift positions. To some, these downsides are a morale killer but to sum it all up, the Skil Table Saw is a great deal for those working with a limited budget.
Pick #3 Shop Fox 10 Inch Table Saw
The Shop Fox 10 Inch Table Saw strongly contends for the top spot with its 3-hp motor. This provides enough power for the model to handle almost any of the most common woodworking projects such as cabinetry and shelving. Despite not being very powerful for heavy-duty projects, its manufacturers seem to have prioritized more on safety.
The Shop Fox 10 Inch Table Saw features a transparent polycarbonate shield that doubles up as a protection guard and a viewing glass to see how your work progresses. In addition, the riving knife in this model mitigates kickback effects making it much safer for users during operation.
Assembling table saws can be a daunting process, especially for newbies. Assembling the Shop Fox 10 Inch Table Saw is very easy and most beginners will appreciate the fact that they can quickly do this on their first time all by themselves. In addition, this model comes with a fully functioning dust port from where you can conveniently collect all debris and dust from one place rather than mess your whole workspace.
On the downside, there are speculations that the manufacture used cheap miter gauge for this model. Low-quality miter gauges are a pain when you need to precisely cut materials at specific angles and will, therefore, cost you accuracy in your output. Furthermore, this model is priced at $2229 but this has been slightly neutralized by its 2-year warranty period.
Other than that, the Shop Fox 10 Inch Table Saw is an affordable, quite powerful, and an efficient table saw that might just be perfect for you.
Pick #4 Bosch 10 Inch Jobsite Table Saw
At number four is the 60 pound Bosch 10 Inch Jobsite Table Saw that also has a collapsible stand. For further convenience, this Jobsite table saw comes with wheels and you can easily drag it to anywhere you want in your workshop.
The Bosch 10 Inch Jobsite Table Saw is not one of those huge table saws in the market but has so much power that attributes to its 4-hp motor. With such power, this model has the capability of operating to cutting speeds of up to 3650 RPM (rotations per minute) enabling it to cut through the toughest mahogany workpieces you might have.
Other additional features that might spark interest include a large surface table and a side wing that extends up to 25 inches increasing your working surface. Having an all-steel design, the Bosch 10 Inch Jobsite Table Saw is quite durable.
For accuracy, this model features a self-aligning square lock rip fence, a blade elevation wheel, and a separate rip fence scale to help you make precise cuts. In addition, you can also use its miter gauge to make more professional miter and/or crosscuts.
On the downside, this model goes for a whopping $409 plus there are claims that its motors are prone to seizing and the foldable stands tend to bend over time. But, all these can easily be mitigated if you pay extra care to it and you can also take advantage of its 1-year limited warranty.
Despite being a hefty investment, the Bosch 10 Inch Jobsite Table Saw is a powerful and portable model that will keep you safe and deliver accurate finishes.
Pick #5 Rockwell Portable Table Saw
Most average level woodworkers are familiar with the Rockwell Portable Table Saw, as it comes at a very low price. This model is an example of a benchtop table saw whose assembly is quite easy and you can immediately use it to cut through tile, wood, metal, plastic and aluminum materials.
Some of the construction type cuts that you can quickly make with this model include rip, miter, inside, and scroll cuts. However, you need to use different blades to cut different materials or else the blade might burnout.
The Rockwell Portable Table Saw weighs about 17 pounds and is easy to move around on your own. In addition, it does not take up much real estate.
Its operational speed maximizes at 3000 RPM so you do not have to raise your hopes up, as this is not nearly enough to cut through the softest of hardwoods such as most maples.
While it is good to see that it features a large steel rip fence, dust vacuum port, and a miter gauge on paper, these often do not function very well in reality. However, at least the model comes with a 3-year manufacturer’s warranty for your peace of mind.
Some of its other flaws include allegations that the blade occasionally wobbles while cutting and that its guides are poorly instructed in case you need to reassemble it after a major repair.
Pick #6 Saw Stop Professional 36 inch
Closing our roundup list is one of the premium cabinet saw options in the market, the Saw Stop Professional 36 inch. This pick is a literal woodworking beast that will see to it that you efficiently handle almost any task in your workshop.
The Saw Stop Professional 36 inch uses up to 220 volts to power its 3-hp motor that enables it to swiftly cut through almost anything. Weighing about 491 pounds, this machine is enormous and very heavy to move around after assembling it.
Its inbuilt safety system is top of the line. This system intelligently detects human contact during operation on the blade area via electromagnetic impulses and instantly shuts down the cabinet to prevent disastrous outcomes.
Other beneficial features include a dust collection port located on the cabinet. In combination with micro blades, this helps guide all wood remnants to the collection point boosting the model’s efficiency of dust and debris collection to 99%.
The Saw Stop Professional table saw also features a vast 36-inch T-Glide fence system that will provide you with smooth operation, enhance precision measurement, and does not deflect once it is locked down.
Even though the model is priced at $3299, it is one of the heftiest, most versatile, and valuable investment you can ever make. However, you can always find refuge in its 2-year warranty period.
How We Picked The Best Table Saws
We totally understand the frustration that might come with online purchases especially if it involves a heavy investment like a table saw. Therefore, we decided to share or criteria for picking out the right table saws for our review. Here are some of the quick things that you might need to consider before making that purchase.
As you have already seen in the review, table saws greatly vary in terms of thousands of dollars and type. The most portable table saws such as the Rockwell Portable Table Saw goes for as little as $89 but cannot really do much compared to the Saw Stop Professional 36 inch, which is a beast in the industry and goes for $3299. All you can do here is to simply evaluate and work within your budget for a happy outcome.
Quality of materials and power
From the review, it would be correct to deduce that Jobsite table saws are more powerful compared to their portable counterparts. The Rockwell Portable Table Saw is an example of the latter camp and consumes about 120 volts only to power up to 3000 RPM making it inefficient to cut through some materials as its blade tends to wobble and burndown under more power. In contrast, the premium pick, Saw Stop Professional 36 inch, consumes up to 220 volts and 13 amps to power the 3-hp powerful cabinet motors that make it more powerful and versatile.
Table saws are victims of wear and tear. This means that most of their parts tend to wear out depending on how frequently they are used. Therefore, the availability of replacement parts is crucial for your continuous productivity. To confirm parts availability, always make a point of contacting the manufacture first before buying that attractive table saw you have found.
Different types of table saws can be used for varied purposes. The most versatile table saws from our review include the Saw Stop Professional 36 inch and Shop Fox 10 Inch Table Saw. These two have proven their capability to withstand different job sites ranging from woodworking to construction projects without fail. If you are after versatility, you better watch out not to be blinded by the cheaper options such as the Rockwell Portable Table Saw that will end up disappointing you in the long run.
Warranty always provides consumers with peace of mind especially when it involves high priced purchases. Before making your purchase always, confirm that the warranty period has clearly been stated. Manufacturers for brands such as the Skil Table Saw with Folding Stand have gone the extra mile to include a 30-day money-back guarantee and a 1-year warranty. This means that you can test the model and if not satisfied with it, you can return it and claim your money back but this has to be within 30 days after purchase. If you are satisfied with it and something goes wrong with it within the year, you can take it back for replacement or repair courtesy of the manufacturer.